CSUN Downs Western Michigan 6-1 at Kajikawa Classic

NORTHRIDGE, Calif. ---

The Cal State Northridge softball team (1-4) defeated Western Michigan 6-1 Sunday morning in its final game at the Kajikawa Classic in Tempe, Ariz. Senior Shelly Tait tossed six strong innings in the circle and freshman Crystal Maas and senior Mia Pagano clubbed home runs as the Matadors blasted the Broncos for their first win of the 2013 season.

Meeting the Broncos from the Mid-American Conference for the third-straight spring in Arizona, CSUN won the rubber match behind some solid pitching from Tait (1-1). She allowed four hits, one unearned run and struck out three in earning her second career win in a Matador uniform.

At the plate, CSUN clubbed seven hits and drew seven walks against Western Michigan pitchers. Maas and Mikayla Thielges each had two hits and Sydney House and Ariana Wassmer each drew two walks.

CSUN struck first, scoring a run with two outs in the bottom of the third. Thielges singled and then moved into scoring position when House earned a base on balls. Freshman Maylynn MItchell then brough Thielges home on the play with an RBI single up the middle.

The Matadors added another run thanks to a two-out rally in the bottom of the fifth. Thielges again started the rally, blasting a ground-rule double to center. She came around to score on an RBI double to right from House.

Northridge was able to break the game open with a four-run sixth inning. With one out, Maas sent the first pitch in her at-bat over the left-field fence for her first career home run. A pair of pinch hitters (Adrienne Martinez, Tiffini Lucero) each drew walks and that set up a three-run bomb from Pagano.

The Broncos managed a run in the seventh and got the bases loaded before Pagano, who entered in a relief role, struck out the third out to end the game.

Northridge has a busy week ahead of itself. On Wednesday, Feb. 13 the Matadors play a doubleheader at Fresno State that begins at 3 p.m. From there, Northridge heads to Palo Alto, Calif., to face Stanford twice, CSU Bakersfield twice and Santa Clara as part of tournament on the campus of the Cardinal.